Etc...

... AND A KISS, TOO, MUMMY?

Maybe because of the influence of the wildly popular Harry Potter series, a new survey of parents in Britain has found that almost all – well, OK, 90 percent – say they read bedtime stories to their children. So what, you ask? Just two years ago, in the same survey, only 40 percent of respondents admitted to doing so.

US is among leaders in fake goods smuggled to Europe

Customs agents seized 95 million counterfeit items worth $2 billion in the European Union last year, 39 percent more than in 2000, says a new annual report. Counterfeiters use complex channels – often linked to the drug or smuggling trade – to distribute their wares. For example, a load of fake Vaseline from Dubai allegedly was linked to Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda organization. The top countries of origin for counterfeit and pirated goods nabbed in 2001 (and the percentage from each), according to the EU report:

1. Thailand 23%

2. China 18%

3. Turkey 8%

4. Hong Kong 5%

5. Czech Republic 4%

6. US 3% (tie) Taiwan 3%

– Associated Press

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